By William

MOUNDRIDGE – In a game where two teams come in with .500 records and are fighting for their state tournament life, somebody has to lose and for the Moundridge girls basketball team, they were the team to come out on the short end of the final score on Monday in the Class 2A substate battle with Ellinwood, as the Lady Wildcats lost on the free throw line by just a pair of points, 54-52.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR THE LADY WILDCATS? The loss means the 2019-20 season for the Lady Wildcats has come to an abrupt end and they finish it with an overall record of 10-11, while Ellinwood ups their season mark to 11-10 and will now face number one seed Sterling on Thursday. The loss and end of the season also means the finish to a solid career playing for the Lady Wildcats for Katie Stucky as she was the lone senior on the roster.

THE GAME – Moundridge held a slim, one-point 10-9 lead at the end of the first quarter before Ellinwood pulled ahead by two at 27-25 heading into the halftime break. After the break the Lady Wildcats put two more points on the board than Ellinwood to make the game tied at 39-39 heading into the final quarter of play. It was in that final quarter that the difference came at the free throw line and Ellinwood made a bunch more than the Lady Wildcats to seal the final very slim two-point win.

THE LADY WILDCAT TEAM – Kate Eichelberger had a huge final game of the season for the Lady Wildcats as she recorded a double-double by leading the team in points with 21 and rebounds where she pulled down 15. Thanks to connecting on three three-pointers, Kourtney Kaufman also finished in double digits with 12 while Katie Stucky closed out her Lady Wildcat career with eight and Kenzie Elmore finished with seven.

Kaufman and Stucky each dished out six assists as Moundridge recorded an amazing 21 assists on 23 made shots from the field. On top of her double-double, Eichelberger also dominated the defense of the paint by blocking seven shots.

The game difference came at the free throw line where Ellinwood connected on 15-of-30 free throws as the Lady Wildcats were whistled for 24 personal fouls during the game compared to just 10 for the Lady Eagles as Moundridge only went to the line 11 times and connected on just five. The Lady Wildcats also lost the battle of turnovers as they committed 13 to just six for Ellinwood which offset the beating Moundridge gave them on mixed shots as they outrebounded Ellinwood 39-28.

WHAT THE COACH HAD TO SAY – “The Lady Wildcats lost a hard fought, close battle to Ellinwood in the first round of sub-state,” explained Lady Wildcat Head Coach Vicky Kessler. “Statistically, every category was close except for fouls.”

Coach Kessler concluded her brief reflections of the game by saying, “I’m really very proud of this team. They are a wonderful group of young ladies that represent Moundridge well on and off the court. We will miss Katie Stucky, our only senior. We have a great group of underclassmen coming back next year and I look forward to getting in the gym with them this summer.”


SCORING:                    1          2          3          4          FINAL

Ellinwood                    9          18        12        17        = 56

LADY WILDCATS          10        15        14        15        = 54

TEAM STATS:              Ellinwood        LADY WILDCATS

Shooting                      19-46 (41%)     23-54 (43%)

3-Pointers                    4-17 (24%)       3-15 (20%)

Free Throws                15-30 (50%)     5-11 (45%)

Rebounds (Off/Def)    28 (9/19)         39 (11/28)

Assists                          10                    21

Turnovers                    6                      13

Steals                           6                      5

Blocked Shots              0                      7

Personal Fouls             11                    24

MOUNDRIDGE LADY WILDCATS INDIVIDUAL SCORING & STAT LEADERS (54 total points): Kate Eichelberger – 21; Kourtney Kaufman – 12; Katie Stucky – 8; Kenzie Elmore – 7; Emily Durst – 2; Kindall Elmore – 2; Erin Durst – 2.

Three-Pointers Made (3): Kourtney Kaufman – 3.

Rebound Leader (Off/Def): Kate Eichelberger – 15 (4/11); Kourtney Kaufman – 6 (0/6); Katie Stucky – 5 (4/1); Kenzie Elmore – 5 (0/5).

Assists Leader: Kourtney Kaufman, Katie Stucky – 6; Erin Durst – 5.

Leader in Steals: Erin Durst – 2.

Leader in Blocked Shots: Kate Eichelberger – 7.

(Post is SPONSORED by CrossDove Writers)

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